The Port of Seattle has revealed its preliminary cruise schedule for 2022, with 296 scheduled calls bringing an estimated 1.26 million revenue passengers through its two cruise terminals this year.
Last year, the port hosted one of the safest cruise seasons in the world, thanks to partnerships with state and local public health officials, cruise lines, ports in Alaska, and passengers. The shortened season, with 82 cruise calls, demonstrated the success of the safety protocols that were in place.
This year, just like in 2021, the port and cruise lines will adopt detailed agreements documenting COVID-19 prevention and response plans. Cruise lines are also detailing how they’ll participate in the CDC’s updated program for cruise ships. Lines operating out of Seattle this year are also expected to stop in Canada, and must meet Canadian health and safety requirements as well.
“Thanks to our successful approach in combating the pandemic, our region is finally on the cusp of the tourism recovery we have been hoping for. A strong 2022 cruise season will be a gift to our region and it is encouraging to see the cruise industry’s commitment to Seattle and the Alaska cruise market,” said Tom Norwalk, President and CEO of Visit Seattle.
“Local tourism and hospitality partners — from restaurants and retail to attractions and hotels—will benefit at a time when our region needs it most. And even more critically – jobs will be created. We thank and congratulate the Port of Seattle for their leadership role in driving economic benefit into our region and we look forward to welcoming cruise passengers to Seattle very soon.”
Prior to the pandemic, the Port of Seattle had predicted a record year for 2020, with 233 scheduled cruise ship visits in Seattle and an expected 1.3 million passengers passing through the port’s terminals.
Cruising in Seattle in 2020 would have supported 5,500 jobs, and provided nearly $900 million in economic impact for the region. With no cruise activity in Seattle in 2020 at all, the economic losses were devastating locally and in Alaska.
“The cruise industry is an important component of the Southeast Alaskan economy. The past two years have been incredibly difficult for our local businesses, and we’re excited to welcome visitors back to our beautiful community and region,” said Alexandra Pierce, Tourism Manager of the City and Borough of Juneau, Alaska.
A recent report prepared for the Alaska Travel Industry Association found that the lack of cruise in 2020 contributed to a 78 percent decline in visitor spending, leading businesses to rely on government assistance, cut jobs, and reduce or pause operations.